The amount allocated to education in this year's budget by the Cross River State government is paltry, by any standard, given the universal importance attached to education and the fact that N1.3 trillion is the budget for this year.
Out of the N1.3 trillion overall budget proposed for this fiscal year, only N30,048,005,365.08 was allocated to education. In 2017, a far lesser amount, N18,653,071,881.93, was allocated.
This year's allocation to education was a far cry from that of the office of the Chief of Staff to the governor. That office was allocated N102,247,125,792.74, about N70 billion more than that of education. With the much touted passion Governor Ben Ayade has for education, the budget for education should have been a bit higher in order to address infrastructure deficit in some of the state's schools and other educational challenges the state is facing.
Out of the N30,048,005,365.08, Cross River University of Technology (CRUTECH) got over 30 percent. It was allocated N10,926,753,327.71. In 2017, the state owned university was allocated N10,086,324,470.38.
With the dire need for more physical infrastructure, equipment and to ward off land speculators who are encroaching on the institution's lands in some of its campuses, the university definitely requires more funds to deal with all these challenges, especially as it needs to fence its lands to prevent further encroachments.
Secondary education board got the second largest share of N8,386,249,99.22 under education this year, which is more than N2 billion higher than the N6,303,618,713.65 it was allocated in 2017.
This is followed by the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) which was allocated N5,846,452,697.84 in 2018 and N7,910,220,070.36 in 2017. However, the actual revenue/expenditure between January and October 2017 was N2,417729,728.65.
Cross River State College of Education was allocated N3,428,651,879.62 in this year's budget. Last year, the teachers' training institution got N1,510443,042.65. However, the actual revenue/expenditure between January and October last year was N508,683,045.60. This was almost a third of what was budgeted for that year.
Technical Education Board got the sum of N2,126,567,917.71 this year, as against N184,082,220.39 it got in 2017. The sum of N33,919,775.25 was allocated to the library board this year, while it got N64,167,573.68 in 2017. The actual revenue/expenditure between January and October was N13,625,397.54.
The sum of N486,258,639.38 was budgeted in 2018 for scholarship board, while it got N640,809,148.48 in 2017. However, the actual revenue/expenditure between January and October last year was a paltry N2,563,630.44.
Agency for Adult and Non Formal Education was allocated N33,731,978.20 in the 2018 budget, while in 2017, it got a slightly higher amount, which was N148,127,139.04. The Cross River State Management Development Institute got N43,717,986.30 in this year's budget. Last year the institute also got a slightly higher amount. It was allocated the sum of N56,732,698.40.
Cross River State Institute of Management and Technology, Ugep was allocated N1,239,540,133.00 as against the N1,748,007,605.00 it received in 2017. However, this was a far cry from the actual revenue/expenditure projected for the period. It ended up with a meager N188,281,333.32 within the period under review.